Thursday, January 14, 2021

Dermot Keyes and Tobie Hickey who performed in the WMS Online Christmas concert

REVIEW: Theatre Royal/YouTube WMS Christmas Concert

DESPITE the desperate times we face, local societies still faced up to the plate with online performances to cheer the gloomy Christmas fare.

Waterford Musical Society showcased the depth of talent at their disposal and the cancellation of their production of ‘My Fair Lady’ was a huge loss to the musical year. They’ve had a number of concerts from the Theatre Royal Vestibule to remind us of just what we are missing and their recent Christmas concert from the Theatre Royal Vestibule certainly revived the Christmas cheer in my house.

Geraldine O’Shea, under the warm glow of a coachman’s lamp and beside a Christmas tree, is ‘all glam’ for the part of concert host and does a tip-top job of introducing the performers. Timmy Moloney – complete with reindeer jumper – is spot on as he croons his way through ‘It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas’. Niamh Fennessy’s soprano and phrasing is a delight with ‘We’re walking in the air’ as the snow falls in a winter-wonderland-wood behind.

 

‘Santa hats off to Wayne Brown who was everything to this smashing online production – musical director and accompanist, arranger and producer – that kickstarted a Christmas celebration for many local amateur musical enthusiasts’

 

Tobie Hickey’s ‘Silver Bells’ lets you know that he just luvvvvves Christmas with a serving that just makes you want to join in. And I did! Carol McCarthy’s mellow mezzo just filled the vestibule with one of my favourite carols ‘In the Bleak Midwinter’ before Andrew Holden crooned all our hearts away with the Bing Crosby favourite ‘White Christmas’.

Trish Orpen had a pretty demanding list for, “Santa and I’m thinking she’s going to need a pretty large chimney to get down all she wants… a yacht, convertible, duplex, decorations from Tiffany’s and the deeds to a platinum mine. Ah you just can’t beat the generosity of Christmas – although the joy of giving is only trottin’ after the joy of gettin’.”

Ray Collins takes us on a child’s journey on the ‘Polar Express’ before Jenni White, with earrings that you could see from outer space, gives us an up-tempo, happy-clappy ‘Winter Wonderland’ as the buses passed by on the Mall.

Michael Joseph, the complete elf in a magnificent Christmas jumper of elf-green and navy blue, gives us ‘Have yourself a merry, little Christmas’; Susan Boyce sings the wonderful ‘Fairytale of New York’ and Jonathan Kelly is a Nat King Cole singalike for the ‘Christmas Song’.

Avril Hartery and Dermot Keyes dueted on the Crosby/Bowie classic ‘Peace on Earth and the Little Drummer Boy’ that always seems to bring something new to the arrangements. Lyndsey Penkert closes out the concert with the perfect finale ‘Oh Holy Night’.

Santa hats off to Wayne Brown who was everything to this smashing online production – musical director and accompanist, arranger and producer – that kickstarted a Christmas celebration for many local amateur musical enthusiasts.

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By Pat McEvoy, Arts Correspondent
Contact Newsdesk: 051 874951

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